They do mix. I'm not just talking about the ride to work or even as transportation to and from assignments. What I'm referring to is using the Vespa as a tool to do a better job.
The Luna Moth carcass I saw on the ground is one of those little details that are easy to miss if you aren't paying attention. And there are things to see everywhere. Little hidden stories just waiting to be noticed.
Conventional behavior would have me behind the wheel of my truck or a rental van to get to and from the locations I need to visit. The windows would be up, air conditioner on, and whatever talk show I could find would be struggling to push out the boredom of sitting in a plush chair with not much to do. That's probably why so many people drive with a cell phone to their ear.
I rode out to an experimental forest today to see how a small tract of forestland was being mapped and cataloged using the latest technology available. In order to identify the exact location of every stem, every species, and every diameter requires a lot of careful attention.
Scanning the gravel road surface for obstacles and loose areas, executing turns, applying throttle and brakes, the whole mechanical process of riding fuels a change in consciousness. Details grow larger and I see more. You need to be conscious and see more if you want to manage risk better. The resultant rise in awareness has benefits for a photographer. I notice things. Like the Luna Moth. I see differently now than I did when I wasn't riding. It is easier to see foreground, background, subject, color, and light almost instantaneously. My eye pours over the viewfinder with a restlessness that just wasn't there a few years ago. And I'm patient. Maybe it's the digital camera or the onset of maturity but I can't help but see a parallel between the ways I see while riding with photography.
I'm grateful to have a profession that places me out in the world and gives me a chance to look out across the natural landscapes here like this view out towards Tussey Mountain. On the way back to the office I stopped to look at a small creek running along the road. This homemade sign for Snake Hill Stables caught my eye and I just had to make a picture.
I can't take the Vespa on every assignment. Sometimes I need room for passengers, have too much gear to haul along, or the scooter just is not a reasonable choice for some hi-speed, long-distance trips. But for many of them within 50 miles it's ideal.
The GTS easily hauls a big camera bag and tripod that suitable for a lot of work. This past Monday I had to ride out to photograph an irrigation project, something not typical in Pennsylvania, and the Vespa was more than adequate.
So now I'm faced with a dilemma---how to deal with this new area of riding. I'm not sure what the policy is concerning blogging about work activity. I suppose I'll have to ask.